Monthly Archives: July 2010

FROM THE DELTA TO DETROIT: 2nd U.S. Social Forum + Leftist Lounge

THE MARCH vs THE PARADE .:. Either Way, People Are Organizing from The Delta to Detroit

(c) Jamila Taylor

July 6, 2010

Though our generation is too young to know just what it was like to have lived during the nightmares that were the race riots, or the dreams that were the civil rights movements of the 1960s, or the 1940s, or any of the many eras before those, to have experienced the 2010 U.S. Social Forum in Detroit this summer is what the rumblings of what such a movement must feel like. We did not know what to expect necessarily, as the core of the gathering was as much about the actual process by which people meet and exchange information as it was about any purpose or outcome.

Already prepped from the previous several days of DIY multi-media overload at the 12th Allied Media Conference (also held downtown Detroit), the canvas only thickened as several thousand people marched down Woodward Ave June 22nd from the University-Cultural Center to Detroit’s Cobo Conference Center and Hart Plaza on the Detroit River for the opening ceremony of the 2nd U.S. Social Forum (USSF). Though the turnout was somewhat lower than projected, a large number of Delta to Detroit Marchers, fresh off several weeks of motorcade and community demonstration stops between New Orleans and Motown, arrived to meet amped USSF goers in a prism of flowing color.  [video p.I]

Groups of all kinds proudly bounced creative banners and witty signs while small brass bands, stilt walkers and some of the most unexpected characters danced amid the chanting, singing chorus. As rallies and demonstrations go, this was certainly more like a parade. Although we did not witness a single hostile act or even experience an angry vibe, “Threat Management Specialists” – looking impressively similar to FBI agents in their sleek black Hummers armed with bullet proof vests, water, first aid and recording devices – rolled along with Homeland Security and DPD police assigned to the event.  [video p.II]

(c) Jamila Taylor

We had a blast co-hosting one of the music stages at Hart Plaza where Invincible (Detroit), Olmeca (LA), The ReadNex Poetry Squad (NYC), Aurora Harris (Detroit), Sunni Patterson (New Orleans), Hurricane Season (Bay Area) and several more of our favorite artists performed at the opening ceremony and throughout the week of free concerts on the riverfront in settings that inspired countless impromptu cameos – new superstars were borne out of the audience hourly it seemed. The audience – a term that faded into yesterday with each USSF session where the line between presenter and receiver grew blurry by the day.  [video p.III]

There would have been no way to wrap our heads around the literally hundreds of self-organized panels, workshops and information sessions happening simultaneously for five long, and amazing, days. However, we did manage to take away a few thought-provoking sound bites on topics from immigration and energy to the non-profit industrial complex. The good news? Apparently we independent media-makers are not only ahead of the game, we’re making the new rules. Or perhaps, we’re simply declaring that there are no rules. At least, not those we have known in our lifetimes.

(c) Jocelyne Ninneman

Several real-time discussions took place, including one on the politics behind major league sports, co-hosted by one of our favorite journalists and radio personalities, Hardknock Radio’s Davey D. While FIFA World Cup football played on screens down the hall, we sat in on a session disclosing some of the disheartening truths surrounding the rather exclusive global organization of the most popular sport in the world. Hm, maybe music and sports really aren’t that different. [photos]

Having the opportunity to take in an advance screening of Oliver Stone’s latest underground film, South of the Border was another highlight of the week. Seeing Hollywood giants like Stone and Danny Glover still doing real work in documentary film and encouraging new voices to make their mark branded these guys with the stamp of grassroots approval, as the USSF, though a lot of things, was not a Hollywood affair. Watching Glover not only get behind the New Orleans couple of Trouble the Water,” but also continue to visit and support freedom and justice pioneer, Grace Lee Boggs, in the flesh, in Detroit places him in a sort of different category.

However, the USSF was not without its thirsty, consummate politicians. Our opening day march / parade [video] stumbles across a local CDC man ready and willing to pitch his platform on camera, among an array of other colorful characters, while helicopters rumbled above. Wonder if the Tea Parties are as vibrant and lively as this? Do they have brass bands, stilt-walkers and hand-made costumes too? The USSF march immediately evoked thoughts of New Orleans second-line parades and jazz funerals. People, people filling the streets with color, music and just plain positive spirit – energized and proud. Fascinating how old traditions are often the curriers of future culture. Never underestimate the power of a parade.

Again, the difference between a parade and a march resonates. The USSF was more of a parade. Not that it wasn’t serious, but definitely going to have to attend a Tea Party or two to see if it is more or a like parade or a march. [photos]

(c) Jocelyne Ninneman

By Friday night though, it was decided that if we couldn’t dance, this would, without a doubt, not be our revolution. End of the industrial era or not, Leftist Lounge put on quite possibly the block party of the year in Detroit’s Eastern Market, where three packed venues anchored the open-air trade district as the streets came alive into the wee hours.

Every stage bounced and swayed with sets from Waajeed, Sake1, DJ Dez, Chela, DJ Graffiti, Sicari, Invincible, the ReadNex Squad, DJ Mel Wonder, and a gang of artists representing the organization that uses dance music to break down cultural barriers. Bert’s soul food and BBQ smoked out on Russell Street while we wished we had some extra loot to pick up some of the larger-than-life art lining the landscape. Epic night to finale a profound week at Ground Zero of the American Industrial Era. Detroit is where it started, ended, and now, it seems, where what’s next is incubating.  [photos]

Is it true?

ANOTHER WORLD IS POSSIBLE | ANOTHER U.S. IS NECESSARY | ANOTHER DETROIT IS HAPPENING!

— Jocelyne Ninneman for Fusicology.com

> Follow her on Twitter @JMoneyRed

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(c) Photos + Video c/o Jocelyne Ninneman + Jamila Taylor

Fusicology Radio presents DJ Kemit Deep House Mix

DJ Kemit
Deep House Mix No. 1
Exclusively For FUSICOLOGY
July 2010

Intro – Teddy Pendergrass Interview

1. KemeticJust ft. Terrance Downs – I Got Life (Original + DJ Spinna Remix) – NDATL
2. Restless Soul ft. Lady Alma – Call Him – Soul Heaven Vinyl Cuts Vol 1
3. Dennis Ferrer – Hey Hey – Objektivity
4. Melanie Fiona – It Kills Me Remix – White Label
5. Peven Everett – Burning Hot Remix – Tribe Records
6. Bohddi Satva – Ayele – Offering Recordings
7. Yacouba – Da Na Ma (Boddhi Satva Remix) – Offering Recordings
8. Black Coffee – Superman – Jellybean Soul
9. Sondiata’s Rebels feat. Sage Monk – Tamboula (Culoe De Song kaMnguni Dub)* – Offering Recordings
10. Nathan Adams – Holding On – Tribe Records

==
BIO

DJ Kemit. Born Kevin Hyman. CEO of Kemit Muzik, Inc. Kemit divides his time between DJing, music production and being a family man. His DJ career began in 1982 at age 12 in Milwaukee and was heavily influenced by the growing house scene in Chicago.

“My first party I deejayed … I borrowed my cousin’s sound system and I was hooked from that moment on.”

A graduate of Howard University and once a member of the Grammy award winning group Arrested Development, Kemit is best known for his work with production partner (Justin Chapman aka Just One) as one half of KemeticJust. KemeticJust has released music on labels including King Street, Nite Grooves, Yoruba Records, Giant Step, Diaspora Recordings, Wave Music, Bombay Records & Play Records. KemeticJust released dozens of singles abroad and nationally. A full length Lp was released on Life Line (Japan) and Pooled Recordings (Germany) in 2004.

As a Grammy nominated producer for his work on AD’s second Lp and various remixes state side & internationally he now looks forward to making a monumental difference in the shape and promotion of real music across the globe.

Kemit currently holds down seven residencies in Atlanta. His musical delivery is drawn from garage classics, hip hop anthems to deep house and reggae. Kemit is the DJ’s DJ.

For information on Kemit:
www.experiencespreadlove.com
www.facebook.com/djkemit
twitter.com/djkemit
www.myspace.com/djkemit

7/29 – FREE DOWNLOADS, MIXTAPES & PODCASTS

FREE DOWNLOADS:

“Repercussions” by Lauryn Hill

DaM-FunK “Hood Pass Intact” (feat. MC Eiht)


Zo! presents “SunStorm” The latest album from Detroit-area born, DC-area based producer/multi-instrumentalist Zo! Featuring Sy Smith, Lady Alma, Darien Brockington, Rapper Big Pooh and more.  Album Info + Stream | Get the CD

FREE downloads:

Greatest Weapon Of All Time feat. Sy Smith

This Could Be The Night feat. Eric Roberson, Darien Brockington & Rapper Big Pooh | VIDEO


MIXTAPES, PODCASTS & STREAMS

MIXTAPE: Waajeed presents The Eternal Mixtape (RIP Baatin)

MIXTAPE: DJ JS-1 & DJ SKIZZ “RE-CYCLED : Strictly Remixes”

MIX: Jazzface aka Svein Brunstad presents Love Linger: “A mix of alternative and indie soul, digital r&b and uptempo tunes that makes you feel good.. It builds from a slow jazzy track, to soulful house, and back down to the roots.”

PODCAST: Melting Pot Global Experience w/DJ Kervyn Mark

PODCAST: “The Journey Continues #10″ w/DJ Kelvin Anderson

STREAM: Trek Life: “As The World Turns” MP3 | Album: Everything Changed Nothing

7/22 – FREE DOWNLOADS, MIXTAPES & PODCASTS

FREE DOWNLOADS: Out of the Box by Makers of Sense [Brother El & labo_labs] – Stream Entire Album

FREELoad mix:  J Boogie presents Africa Unite! (Beat Sauce / Brooklyn Radio)

PODCAST: Conspiracy Worldwide Radio with guests Pharoahe Monch, Vinnie Paz, Black Milk & more

iTUNES: The Gulf Aid All-Stars – “It Ain’t My Fault (Preservation Hall Jazz Band ft. Lenny Kravitz x Mos Def x Trombone Shorty)

SINGLE: Jeffrey L. Richardson – Another World Is Possible

iTUNES: The Gulf Aid All-Stars – “It Ain’t My Fault (Preservation Hall Jazz Band ft. Lenny Kravitz x Mos Def x Trombone Shorty)

MIXTAPE: Rozzi Daime “Do The Daime Thing

MIXTAPE: Truth Universal Mixtape by DJ TekNek

New Orleans’ Truth Universal – “Guerrilla Business” – iTunes, Video, Freeload

Having worked with artists such as sticman of Dead Prez, Doodlebug of Digable Planets, Sula of Zion Trinity and Wise Intelligent, to follow his debut full-length effort “Self Determination,” New Orleans MC Truth Universal releases his second project in the Grassroots Campaign pipeline, “Guerrilla Business,” with features from rising NoLa mic jocks Lyrikill, Skipp Coon & more – get it now on iTunes + give the video a vote on MTV.com or VH1.com + download the free mix from DJ TekNek.

Nia Andrews: First Solo Performance | Blog, Video & Photos


Blog by Nia Andrews herself
Video & Photos c/o Frolab.com

sunday july 18. what a special night. my solo debut at angel’s piano bar. i’d had a feeling about the place the first time i walked in there and knew i wanted to play there. maybe my childhood obsession with josephine baker resurfaced the moment i saw her smiling wide behind the bandstand. or maybe it was the vibe of the place.

i’d performed as a background singer, but i’d never done my own thing. after hitting jam sessions pretty regularly to get more cozy on mic without having someone else to hide behind, i knew it was time to break off and discover what my own thing would feel like. i keep my head down and work quietly until the work is done and i’m ready to show it. that’s kind of how this debut was. it seemed to come out of the blue, but for me, it had been brewing. i knew i wanted a rhythm section, and i knew i wanted to turn specific songs inside out with a jazz undertone with a few moody interludes and hip-hop breaks - a melee of sound that greatly sum up where i come from musically. it took some time to put the band together, but  then i found paul legaspi and charlie domingo. with my partner-in-crime, mark de clive-lowe (whom i met at a jam session last year), we now had a band and were ready to go.

my set list consisted of songs i’d written over time and jazz-infused covers of some of my favorite songs that have influenced me most profoundly. i love joni mitchell’s lyricism and musicality – so we did “help me”. i did my all time favorite brazilian songs. a little nancy wilson/canonball adderly was in the mix as well. i like bringing a bit of tension to the music that i do, so mark and i worked on moodier arrangements of these along with some of my existing songs to create a special set specific to angels.

the 1st set, my ENTIRE family showed up. a little overwhelming. ok, REALLY overwhelming. also really amazing. my 3-year-old son at one point sat directly in front of me as i started the song i wrote about him, called “i’d do it all again”, nearly sending me spiraling into tears!  but by the 2nd set, the babies went home, and LA’s artists community came out. the creative solidarity between us all created magic in that room and it was palpable. with my band by my side and josephine holding me down in back, something happened in there. i sweated my hair out. my make up smeared. and we packed the house and blew the roof off of angel’s. i played my tambourine so hard i got a blister! it was more fun than i could ever expect. and to think i was nervous about not having anyone or anything to hide behind for the first time. no piano or guitar like most singer/songwriters. no big name artist like my days as a background singer. not even any bangs to cover my eyes! nope…just me, naked and bare. it felt good to shed. and i absolutely cannot wait to do it again.


nia

Review: Allied Media Conference 2010 – Detroit

2010 .:. DETROIT .:. Everyone Has A Media Pass

The last 2 weeks of June 2010 saw some true agents of change at work. If you were in Detroit during the month of June, you either knowingly, or unknowingly, witnessed the synthesis of the future underway at Ground Zero, otherwise known as the Motor City. While most mainstream media keeps a steady job of scaring people away from America’s epicenter of innovation, the agents of the future were busy synching independent and alternative media resources at a series of inclusive events designed to have well, a minimal amount of design. Read on to see what we mean…


12th Annual Allied Media Conference

(c) Carleton S. Gholz


Our first 4-day intensive was at the 12th Allied Media Conference hosted at Detroit’s Wayne State University, where, first of all, this unique campus in the heart of downtown’s cultural-museum district proved to have abounding independent and grassroots businesses of all kinds to be discovered in seemingly every nook and cranny. We were certainly impressed with the number of bicyclists in and around the conference, especially in the city known to be almost completely vehicular.

Opening night we scored 3 amazing prints from featured visual artist, and AMC staff graphic designer, Joe Namy, at the conference’s art reception, “language.power.difference” inside a fantastic local loft gallery, and witnessed the dropping of several 10+ foot tall Pacific-Island-style handmade canvases in the welcome lobby at registration Friday morning. Immediately there was something a bit different about this “conference” – everyone in the building was constantly busy recording multi-media, uploading or downloading multi-media on the spot, interviewing each other, and in the lower level, young people were actually building computer mesh networks and radio broadcasting modules. It was a scene from a very colorful spaceship.

With over 15 sessions and workshops to choose from, plus a local city tour off-site, to say it was difficult to choose where to learn would be quite the understatement. Eventually we made it to check out a super engaging youth-led, multi-media mural collaboration project headed up by the Grace Lee-Boggs-founded organization, Detroit Summer, and learned about some of the urban farming going on as we speak among the brownfields-turned-greenfields of the city popular media would have you believing is a black hole of death and decay. These blindingly vibrant sprouts of new life amid last century’s bland, waning industrial backdrop painted what appears to be what happens after “Metropolis” – is Detroit already answering it’s own question of what happens after mass industry is dead and buried?

Friday night’s official afterparty certified us as sold Tamar-kali fans, as well as raised an eyebrow at rock-hybrid outfit I, Crime. Up and at ‘em the next day, Saturday presented some interesting approaches to “unearthing solutions in an era of unnatural disaster” and a personal favorite, an Octavia Butler literature symposium, which inspired again the notion of just how powerful honest, and truly creative media can be in illustrating the most profound messages, even without the support of typical pop culture portals. As if there was any space left in the brain Saturday, we attempted to stay up to speed in the collaborative mapping seminar where tons of free and affordable digital linking tools and ideas bounced around a small room among a group of uber cool map nerds looking to prove that everything really is connected. One of the coolest projects highlighted was the Open Sound New Orleans music map. Simply amazing.

(c) Jocelyne Ninneman

By nightfall Saturday, media nerds were in need of our next dose of quality music, and well, we got perhaps more than we bargained for at that night’s official AMC showcase. Beyond the fact that we had the opportunity to hear Detroit Hip Hop legend, Miz Korona , perform her debut solo album live for the first time, along with surprise guest after surprise guest including more Motor City talent like Invincible,Jessica Care Moore with a full live band, and rising group Stereoluxxx c/o WINK Detroit, we were in awe of the quality of the crowd. Man, even the audience at this party was just as entertaining as the talent on the bill – we even got down in the dance cypher like it was 1993 all over again, wanting more from DJs Sicari, Mark Flash and RiMarkable. To call this gig diverse and colorful would not even do this afterparty at the MOCAD gallery justice. Packed with renewed energy and fresh faces, the former warehouse saw visitors experience Detroit legends they’d only heard about before and Detroiters reassured that there is life after death.

Tired though we were, we were up bright and early Sunday morning for often our raison d’etre, or the AMC session entitled, “It’s OurMusic The World Lives and Dies To: Creating a Music-Based Economy in Detroit” for which Fusicology.com‘s Nina Morena and Jocelyne Ninneman joined other music media and business entrepreneurs from organizations such as 5E Gallery, SplinkMe.com, MichiganHipHop.com, EmergenceMedia.org and more. Moderated by innovative Detroit artists, Invincible and MonicaBlaire, a cast of independent journalists, media-makers, consultants and local venue owners began to strategize how the city’s music community can pool its collective talents and resources to actually own and operate its creative property without interference from the majors. [Photos courtesy Carleton S. Gholz]

(c) Carleton S. Gholz

From the opening ceremony to the closing, the AMC facilitated some of the most inspiring and empowering experiences from and for people from all types of circumstances. Yet, it somehow was also one of the more humbling “conferences” due in large part to it’s inclusive infrastructure that disallowed for the more typical presenter-vs-audience summit framework, which seems to successfully keep egos in check and focus on the information exchange network, rather than an “expert”-producing environment. At the AMC, everyone has media credentials. And what is more Detroit than that? Keeping it real, indeed.

In the AMC mission;


*We emphasize our own power and legitimacy.

*We are agents, not victims.

*The strongest solutions happen through the process, not in a moment at the end of the process.

+ Kudos to the AMC directors for integrating local independent businesses intimately into their programming.

— Jocelyne Ninneman for Fusicology.com

> Follow her on Twitter @JMoneyRed

Duck Down 15th Year Anniversary re-cap

By Dashaun Simmons
Photos by Shino Yanagawa

It all started with two guys who decided they didn’t want to be nervous anymore. Buckshot the young artist and Dru Ha the intern joined forces to control their future by creating Duck Down management. Starting with two groups (Black Moon and Smif-N-Wessun), Duck Down provided an opportunity to leave their first home of Nervous Records. The new company found a fresh start in the shape of a label distribution deal with Priority Records. 15 years later minus a few original soldiers, but with the addition of many new artists like Rustee Juxx, B-Real of Cypress Hill, and Pharoahe Monch, Duck Down Records has much to celebrate.

The location for the celebration was B.B. King Blues in Times Square, NYC. The lineup for the night was packed to the brim with label mates who call Duck Down home. Like any hip hop show there was the looming promise of “special guests” to add mystery to the evening. The first act was a new signee to the label named Team Faceless. They are the first all white group on the label. These guys are born and bred Manhattanites, and their song “Re-elect Dinkins” is a throwback to the old NY we all miss so much. It appears that Duck Down is diversifying their portfolio.

As other acts take the stage like Rustee Jux (with his son as the best hype man ever), and Kidz In The Hall I notice the audience is a little different. During the era of Duck Down’s first release from a hybrid group called the Fab 5, you would find a mass of blunt smoking dudes. These guys would typically wear Timberlands and Champion hoodies and, MAYBE have a down girl or two in the mix. However in this new fan base, if someone were to call a Timbs and hood check there would be a ton of failures. Hearing a few blonde-haired Saturday night party girls say “We’re here for Duck Down tonight” let me know times have changed.

DJ Evil Dee of Black Moon was on the mix (come on kick it!) playing a ton of underground and commercial heavy hitters from both the east and west coast from the East Flatbush Project to 2 Pac. Brooklyn’s own Skyzoo represents the label well during his performance. He’s on stage backed up by a DJ and trumpet player to mix things up. These three factors keep the crowd entertained as they await the main event of the night, the Boot Camp Click set. The celebration continues on with performances by the new crop of Duck Down artists like Torae, who damn near threatens the crowd jokingly when they miss a cue to rap along his chorus. On the other end, vets who have been in the game for years like Pharoahe Monch now call the label home and put down a serious show. Sprinkled with a few special guests like Large Professor, Talib Kweli, Masta Ace, and Jean Grae, the audience was very satisfied.

Once the Boot Camp Click took the stage class was clearly in session. The first phrase out of the mouth of the Buckshot “I’m gonnna make yall work tonight” let everyone know that playtime was over. After nearly seamless sets by Smif-N-Wessun and Black Moon (yes 5Ft was in the building) the new marquee artist of the label took the stage. Sean Price, who as one-half of the group Heltah Skeltah and one-fifth of the Fab 5 is now arguably Duck Down’s biggest draw. As soon as he steps out the crowd goes crazy. Just by performing a couple of mixtape verses (that the whole audience knew verbatim) Sean P captivates the entire B.B. Kings. The energy only goes higher when his seldom seen partner Rock joins him on stage to perform some Heltah Skeltah songs.

Watching Boot Camp trade songs and verses with other members playing impromptu hype men you can see the love still present. Even with none of the members of O.G.C available to perform (Starang hold ya head), it felt like 1995 all over again. The speakers were blasting everything from Black Moon’sHow Many Emcee’s” to Smif-N-Wessun’s classic “Bucktown” which finished with both members in the crowd. The evening came to an end with Black Moon performing “Who Got Da Props”, their first single on Nervous, which started everything. As seen by the level of support and love shown on this 15-year anniversary, its clear Duck Down still has the props.